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The Precise Number of Groundhog Days in “Groundhog Day”

The Precise Number of Groundhog Days in “Groundhog Day” (photo)

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Kudos to Simon Gallagher over on Obsessed With Film. In honor of Groundhog Day last week — when Punxsutawney Phil predicted an early spring (so we got that going for us [and, yes, I am mixing my Bill Murray movie references]) — Gallagher pinpointed the exact number of Groundhog Days Murray’s Phil Connors endures in “Groundhog Day:” 12,403 days. That’s 33 years and 358 days, well above director Harold Ramis’ original on-record guess of about ten years, but right in the range he later gave after further consideration, which was between 30 and 40 years.

Gallagher arrived at that total by adding up every day we see Phil endure, plus any day he specifically mentions but we don’t see (he claims he’s been “stabbed, shot, poisoned, frozen, hung, electrocuted, and burned,” but we only see the electrocution, so tack on six more days). It must be noted that Gallagher’s precise number actually involves a bit of conjecture as he had to estimate, with what seems to be a fair amount of deductive reasoning, how long it would take Phil to learn the skills he displays by his final Groundhog Day. For example, on guessing how long would take someone to self-teach themselves to sculpt ice:

“Malcolm Gladwell has stated that it takes anyone 10,000 hours to become an expert at any one subject, and Phil is clealy an expert ice sculptor, since the ice sculpture is the one thing in ‘Groundhog Day’ that is entirely quantifiable by what we can see on screen (playing one song well does not make anyone an expert pianist, and speaking one French poem perfectly likewise is not an indicator of expertise). Broken down that is an hour a day for 27 years, but we know Phil by now, and we know that when he figures out that something gets him closer to fourth base with Rita, he’s likely to pursue it a little more rabidly than that. So I’m suggesting an average of 4 hours per day – based also on his willingness to stick to 4 or 5 hours of card flicking for six solid months, and the impending threat of frost bite over longer periods – which brings that to just under 7 years, based on him working for consecutive days for that whole time, or more likely 10 years sticking to a traditional 5 day a week working directive.”

Do check out the whole piece to enjoy just how thorough a job it does of running through Phil’s endless wanderings through Punxsutawney. Plus the fact that Gallagher must have surely had to endure a “Groundhog Day”-esque repetition of “Groundhog Day” viewings to correctly measure the number of days only makes his piece more entertaining.

Also: did you know it’s Groundhog Day and not Groundhog‘s Day? Cause it is.

[H/T Movie City News]

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Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

via GIPHY

Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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